Featured Threads Archive
So it’s Formula One’s tribute act to New Years’ Eve: an interminable and unexciting pre-amble to ten minutes of fireworks then the vain hope that next year will be better.
Ok, so that’s the least optimistic take ever, but Abu Dhabi has only really produced one race that is memorable for being a great race - 2012 - and we all recall the radio calls of the winner more than the action.
Brazil suggests that Hamilton’s Mercedes (with the 2018 engine) is the best around, but they’ve not shown much pace at night this year even if circumstances conspired to deliver victory in Singapore. There’s usually a multi-chassis race in the top six, somewhere.
It’s the end of an error, erm... era, at Woking as McLaren bail from the Honda project. Toro Rosso are currently showing them how easy Renault can be to work with.
Most will expect the pink Force Indias to be followed home by yellow, orange and white machinery with the Heartgas partnership at Toro Rosso around too.
Sauber will probably...
So both the drivers and constructors championships are over. Mercedes are constructors champions (again) and Lewis Hamilton has recovered the title stolen from him by Nico Rosberg last year. Now it's time to go to (often not so) sunny Brazil and the race between the lakes.
Do you remember last year? It rained and the race stopped and started as as showers turned in to storms and back again. It went on for over 3 hours, 3 hours and 1 minute to be exact. Lewis won but Max Verstappen won a whole host of new fans as he pitched his Red Bull about in the rain in a fashion rarely seen in modern Formula 1. In reality the driver of the day last year was Lewis, his control and poise in the race were sublime and this race, of itself, probably deserved a title of its own. But Nico tippytoed around behind Lewis, stealing second and doing his best Nelson Piquet impression as he did "just enough" to keep his title bid on track.
So what can we expect this year? The last couple of races...
Unlike most of the flow of border traffic F1 has crossed from Texas to Mexico. This Grand Prix has not been back for long but has already established as a firm favourite with fans on TV and at the track alike. The podium celebrations have always looked amazing and this year it should be even more spectuacular as this is likely to be the title decider. All Lewis Hamilton has to do is finished 5th or higher and 2017 is done and dusted. Even if he was off form it wouldn't be that difficult but in his current form I fully expect to see him on the top step, wearing a sombrero, telling us the Mexican fans are the best in the world and celebrating championship number 4.
Is a Lewis Hamilton win a forgone conclusion? Well I wouldn't bet against it. To be fair to Vettel he had a great race at Austin it was just that Hamilton and Mercedes were on another level. Its possible Hamilton will just coast it home in Mexico so as not to risk the title but it doesn't seem in his nature. Looking...
And so we enter the final phase of the 2017 season and we are now at the point where the points leading driver can win the title should his rival finish lower than a certain position (in this case, 4th I believe). It just so happens that we arrive at a track where the Mercedes team have always ran well having won the last 3 races held there. Also, of the 5 races held to date, Hamilton has won 4 of them and his title rival Sebastian Vettel the other.
Quite why Ferrari have managed to implode in the second half of the season remains to be seen. Kimi hasn't really been in the races all year and Seb seems to be losing the plot at every opportunity. The increasing speed, reliability and confidence from the Red Bull camp has not helped matters but any hope of this season being a close two way battle between Vettel and Hamilton disappeared a long time ago. Only a monumental disaster could stop Hamilton from winning the title now.
As for the track, its always been a popular one with...
Without a doubt Suzuka is my favorite circuit to drive around (on my PS4) and one of my favorites to watch. It is a proper old school track with lots of tricky technical corners and as we have seen this year the old school tracks are giving this generation of F1 cars the best chance at doing some actual racing.
This track suits Mercedes and Redbull if past form is anything to go by. Mercedes & McLaren Mercedes along with Redbull have shared the spoils since 2004 which is the last time a Ferrari won in Suzuka.
Lewis has 3 wins around here 2 of which came in 2014 and 2015, however Hammy will hope for a better start than last year as he had a shocker dropping to 8th off the line leaving Nico to take the win. I don’t think it will be a walk in the park for Lewis as Ferrari have gained ground.
Seb (3 wheels on my wagon) Vettel has 4 wins in Suzuka all with Red Bull and will be looking to break Ferraris form book in Japan with a win. I certainly wouldn’t count him out despite that...
Malaysia was the second country in Asia to be awarded a Formula One race in 1999. The success of the race at Sepang was the cue for the expansion throughout Asia of Formula One, with varying levels of success.
2017 sees Malaysia say goodbye to Formula One as the owners of the Sepang circuit sensibly believe that their finances would be better served if Moto GP provided the sole blue riband event at their circuit. This is, of course, an indictment on Formula One more than those who are rightly looking out for their circuit's best interests.
Down the years, this circuit has seen many notable events. Its inaugral race saw Michael Schumacher's return from injury only to give the win up to team-mate and accidental title-challenger Eddie Irvine, with the Ferraris disqualified then reinstated in a move that conviniently restored a title decider at Suzuka. Schumacher was also at the vanguard of the Ferrari comeback from a poor stacked pit-stop in the wet in 2001, with he and Barrichello...
So every year I write the Singapore intro thread. I have concluded from this that I am the only person who actually likes the Singapore Grand Prix. I know it’s a hastily put together micky mouse street circuit in a country with no fan base, but I can’t help it, I think it looks amazing under the lights and I love the closed in walled racing. I know Bahrain and Abu Dhabi do night racing now but just something about Singapore that gets me excited. I guess it’s a bit like the way Monaco gets me excited. I know we’re not going to get a lot of overtaking and the race might have some very dull moments but I can’t help but enjoy it. I think its just something about the tension of street circuits I like. The fact that it could all go wrong at any moment is just good watching.
This is the 10th Singapore Grand Prix and all 9 previous races have talking points. The most notorious one of course was the very first race in 2008 where the result was Nelson Piqueted after a conspiracy to fix the...
Monza. Or as I like to think of it, ‘MONZAAAA!’. With more GPs hosted than anywhere else; the basic principle of speed defined in its iconic layout; and fans that provide a level of enthusiasm not seen at any other circuit, Monza could be said to transcend the sport itself. Will it live up to its billing this year?
Mercedes romped it in 2016, with Lewis missing out on a hat-trick of Monza victories after a poor start handed the lead to Rosberg, which he kept to the line. This must have been particularly galling for Lewis after having lit up the circuit on Saturday with a pole lap half a second quicker than his team-mate. But this year is different – Ferrari are leading the championship with a much stronger car. Then again, if Spa is anything to go by, Lewis has Ferrari in his pocket on a fast circuit.
Alonso last won here for Ferrari in 2010, the Tifosi will be clamouring for another home victory and this year represents the best chance since then by a long chalk. Vettel has the...
... it's the engine.
I was mulling over a comment by Galahad in race chat the other day that the current driver line up is amongst the worst we have seen in recent years. From that I thought I would go off and look at the number of races, number of different winners, different winning constructors and pole winners since the start of the World Championship era in 1950. I have to admit that the early years are skewed by the Indy 500 races included in the Championship and I will go back and remove these at some point.
But, back to the point, we all know that the car has a significant impact on how a driver performs but, similarly, a poor driver (no matter how good the car) is till going to be poor. However, I think what most of us want it competitive racing where the ability of the driver has more of an influence over the result.
My take on the figures I have cobbled together is that the most competitive era in F1 was when the Cosworth engine was used by more...
As F1 moves into the summer break, Ferrari are firmly in the lead, and Mercedes must be feeling just a little worried.Their supremacy is definitely being threatened, and so the Belgian Grand Prix (Spa-Francorchamps) will be crucial for them if they are to win this years Constructors and drivers championships. Crucial for Ferrari as well.
If Spa is famous for anything it's the unpredictable nature of the race, courtesy of the weather. Frequently one part of the track can be sunny and dry, whilst just round the corner it's raining, quite a challenge for drivers. But despite the difficulties, or maybe because of them, Spa is popular with drivers and fans alike.
Spa started life running on public narrow roads, between three different villages, but by 1983 it had become, more or less, the track we know now. A mix of long straights and fast corners and the longest F1 circuit on the F1 calendar.
Kimi Raikkonen has had four wins at Spa, and certainly has the car to do so again, but I...
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